National News

AAP ready for foray into UP; trouble for SP, BSP

July 24, 2020 04:35 PM

LUCKNOW: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is launching a massive campaign in Uttar Pradesh, more than a year and a half before the state Assembly elections are due.

The AAP will now focus on Most Backward Castes (MBC) and Most Dalits and issues related to them.

This could cause considerable unease in the Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party camps that are presently the sole custodians of the Backwards and Dalit votes.

In an interview with IANS, Sanjay Singh, the party's national spokesman, said on Friday, "We will focus on MBCs and Most Dalits because these sections of society have been consistently ignored by various governments."

Singh was in Lucknow on Friday to participate in a party meeting.

He said, "I am going to stay in UP now and work for the party. I am starting my tours in five phases from July 27 and in the first two phases, I will visit Prayagraj, Kaushambhi, Pratapgarh, Sultanpur and Ambedkar Nagar, Faizabad, Basti and Siddhartha Nagar. In the second phase, I will cover other districts in eastern UP."

In the third phase from August 17, the AAP MP will cover western Uttar Pradesh by visiting various districts and in the fourth phase, he will tour the remaining districts in western UP. Finally he will go to Bundelkhand in the fifth phase of his tour.

Replying to a question, Singh said the AAP will be contesting the upcoming panchayat elections in the state.

"We will contest all the 69,000 gram sabhas and the 300 zila panchayat elections. Our main issues will be the mishandling of the corona crisis and the rising crime graph," he said.

The AAP leader said that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has turned Uttar Pradesh into a 'rogi' (ailing) state.

"In Delhi, we adopted the formula of 'testing, testing and only testing'. We started on the home isolation formula in the beginning and finally managed to control the pandemic. In UP, the government has resorted to home isolation after three and a half months, when the situation has turned volcanic," he said.

He said that Yogi Adityanath had set up his 'Team 11' to fight the coronavirus but the team did not have even a single medical expert or a doctor, which speaks volumes about the government's priorities.

"The team has only bureaucrats and the government has gone from being democratic to being bureaucratic," he stated.

Talking about the crime situation in the state, Sanjay Singh said that the nexus between the criminals, police and those in power had led to complete lawlessness.

"There is a law in the jungle too but here there is no law. Who is going to explain the killings of Devendra Mishra (police officer in Bikru), Vikram Joshi (journalist in Ghaziabad), Sanjeet Yadav (Kanpur) and Shubham Mani Tripathi (Unnao)?" he asked.

Asked whether the AAP's foray in Uttar Pradesh would further divide the anti-BJP votes and actually help the Yogi Adityanath government in returning to power, Singh said, "These are things that should be left to the voters to decide. We will be contesting on issues, not on incidents. We will raise the issue of atrocities without caste references. Our Delhi model will help us in western UP."

About the lack of leadership in the party's state unit, Singh said, "We want the leadership to emerge from the grassroots level. The panchayat elections will strengthen the organization and give us leadership."

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